Tag: Julian of Norwich
I have a steadily extending bookshelf of reference material. Not all useful, alas, but in this stage I never know what is useful until I get there, so I just have to keep reading.
I’m trying to plan the borders for my planned pieces – these are companions for William Marshall, after all, so the basic style of the designs needs to match his. So, for example, since Julian of Norwich and Rahere are both clerical figures, at least to a degree, maybe I can take into account the information that the “lilies of the field” mentioned in the Bible are probably Lilium candidum, which is native to the Holy Land. Perhaps I could include them, and scallop shells (emblems of pilgrimage), and maybe London Pride (scabious urbanum?) for Rahere? Or maybe lavender or one of the healing herbs? And for Julian, the lilies of the field with hazel leaves and nuts?
I’ve started also to think about the designs themselves. Among the references I’ve not shown in that picture, I have a book of Psalms illustrated with a variety of artwork from the medieval and renaissance period. The illustrations weren’t chosen with my needs in mind, of course, so this rather scrappy effort for Julian is based on a combination of several. I’d like to have a better drapery effect when I get there, although I have to be careful not to be too exaggerated – I can’t imagine anchoresses dressed in the height of fashion!
For Rahere, I can use the drawing of the effigy on his tomb as the basis, but in his hands will be a model of the Priory and Hospital of St Bartholomew The Great, and at his feet the jester’s cap symbolising the life he rejected after the loss of The White Ship. I may have building work behind him, the beginning of a tower or a wall.
When I made my first research visit to St Bartholomew’s, I didn’t look at the outside, which may prove to be a mistake. Fortunately I am sure I will get another chance to visit!
By contrast, when I visited Mother Julian’s Church, I didn’t do a sketch inside her cell – that would have involved being terribly in the way for the people preparing for a Flower Festival later in the week. I sat in the churchyard and painted the outside, instead. Norwich is a bit more of an epic to get to from the west coast, where we are, so I may have to be Even More Imaginative for Mother Julian’s surroundings!